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ToSeek
New Member

6 Posts

Posted - 09/13/2006 :  10:06:30   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit ToSeek's Homepage Send ToSeek a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal

For anyone interested, This thread has the follow up so far and it got more interesting. Seems I've been accused by half the moderators and defended by the other half. Now it was locked and we'll see what follows. Frankly, I may not post there after this anyway. I'm being called a liar by ToSeek, whom I had respected until now. I don't know who tinaa is, never heard of her until this.



Oh, good, now I'm being talked about behind my back.

I would try to defend myself over the "liar" issue, but I'd prefer to get some specifics first.

As for Tinaa, she's one of the moderators who came from the Universe Today side in the merger.
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ToSeek
New Member

6 Posts

Posted - 09/13/2006 :  10:11:00   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit ToSeek's Homepage Send ToSeek a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Chippewa

I have at least four people on my ignore list over there simply because they occasionally but cumulatively have derided Al Gore, Michael Moore, and "the French" without moderator warnings. Apparently, contemptuous mirth is permitted while simultaneously placing a more serious reply or correction closer to violation of the BAUT rules.



Please note that policing BAUT is a job for everyone, not just the moderators. If you saw a post you found objectionable, then report it. We don't always spot them, and, even if we do, we may either not find them objectionable or not have time at the moment to deal with them. Generating a report at least forces us to face the issue. Beskeptigal's posts were reported (more than once, in fact, if I recall correctly) and so became more visible than other posts that may not have been.

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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 09/14/2006 :  14:12:05   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
This is an open forum, ToSeek, unlike the moderator forum on BAUT where you've been discussing me.

I started this thread here and at JREF when I was suspended at BAUT and had no way of discussing the issue there. I also PMed Phil from the Skepchick board the same day I started these threads and included a link to the JREF thread informing him I was discussing the BAUT on JREF.

I did not intend to reply to your PM. But since you are here, and since you care what has been said about you, the following is what I sent Phil when he delegated the response back to you regarding the suspension.

quote:
quote:
The Bad Astronomer:

beskeptical,

I am looking this situation over.

-Phil
beskeptical:

I'm sorry you didn't have time to deal with this. I thank you for introducing me to the skeptical community. I believe it is one of the critical issues our society faces today. I hope to meet you at TAM5.

I am not sure I will be investing any more time trying to explain the issues to ToSeek who has repeatedly claimed I am not to be believed. It's a shame you couldn't have delegated this to someone more neutral.

ToSeek: That is not what [tinaa] is saying at all, and I find it difficult to believe that your misunderstanding could be innocent.

ToSeek still baffles me, even after your last attempt to explain it...don't throw in gratuitous digs against religion or right-wing politicians along the way...And "you could delete the post" isn't much of an excuse.

ToSeekAnd I'm getting more than a little tired of your trying to fudge your statements into something innocent, when they clearly are not. You've called Rove a liar at least three times now, and you didn't need to the first time....However, neither of your objectionable statements of fact have been scientific ones....Your defense has reduced itself to the five-year-old level of "Well, you did it, too!


ToSeek ignored his own assessment that the 2nd post which was locked was actually OK as he became angrier I didn't accept his conclusions about my motives.

ToSeek:I think that accusing Karl Rove of lies and "Newspeak" in the first thread is outside the bounds of legitimate discussion here and merited a warning. I don't see any problems with the second thread, nor with the new one.



I leave you with these comments from people who did indeed understand what I was trying to say.

Arneb:Nothing, but nothing I've read from beskeptical in the 14 months I've been frequenting this board gave me reason to think of beskeptical as someone likely to incite a flame war.

The first (and AFAIK, still valid) rulof this board was "be nice". Beskeptical is entirely within this rule in making an elaborate, polite and succint case that some recent moderator action against [her] was unfair.

Arneb:I find myself agreeing with beskeptical, by and large. The first thread title merited change (pushing each other's buttons was a very apt description by antoniseb), but the thread subject is, I think, extremely valuable and relevant to this board. Personally, I would love to see it reopened. I have done some professional work on "alternative" medicine myself (as an expert witness in civil cases, so this is something I could even contribute to.

Beskepticals quickly-locked complaint thread seems entirely justified to me (putting procedural issues aside). Especially, he is right in stating that there is no more politics and religion in the subject than is necessary for the, what was it? - "Focused, polite discussion of concepts [...] which bear direct relevance to astronomy and science, for the purposes of conversing about and addressing misconceptions" (12 B).

pghnative: I think it is telling that Beskeptical's first thread did not spiral into a flame war. Instead, several posters joined in for what looked like an interesting discussion. I would have liked to see the thread remain open.

beskeptical:And still there isn't one comment here defending why my post to the mod saying sorry, I'll take the offensive comments out, it wasn't intentional, wasn't enough to have settled this whole affair at the beginning.

Arneb:This is what I am not getting either. Why wasn't the affair finished with that? beskeptical explained herself quite sufficiently, didn't she?

I cannot see this behaviour as guided by malicious intent, although it involved breaking a rule. After all, she had tried to make herself clear in PMs. Neither can I see how knowing the intermoderator traffic about these posts would change my view.

As I feared from the style and tone in Tinaa's first reply, this discussion is taking a downward turn: The moderators start to become party in this issue, and this is not a good prerequisite for moderation.

Roy Batty: I have to say, I tend to agree with all of Arneb's points above.



Contrary to your statement, "Your defense has reduced itself to the five-year-old level of "Well, you did it, too!", that was not what I said at all. This is a perfect example of where your emotional reaction has prevented you from hearing what is being said.

The issue you think I am talking about is posting the Rove comment. You think I am defending the post. There was a mixed response as to whether the Rove reference was within the rules and within the context of the topic. But if the moderators say it wasn't, I have no argument with that.

The issue I was talking about was your accusation I had to know the Rove comment violated the rules and your accusation the Rove comment had no connection to the post topic and was just thrown in there. If a number of other people also thought the Rove reference was relevant, (maybe unnecessary, but not irrelevant), and other people weren't sure the comment did violate the rules, then how is it you are so sure I must have known?

You didn't think the post with the Shermer reference was against the board rules yet tinaa and Antonseb did. And in fact, you ignored that whole part of the incident as you ranted about the motives you deduced from my posts.

Tinaa attacked what I quoted from Shermer, claiming people would draw certain conclusions that would insult them. Kaptain K thought that was a poor reason to find a post violated the rules since it meant people would have to anticipate all sorts of things they couldn't possibly anticipate. Yet my reaction to tinaa's comment was immediately suspect by you for some bizarre reason I still don't quite get.

Now the thread is locked with final comment by Phil that is based on his only having read the first post (I think
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ToSeek
New Member

6 Posts

Posted - 09/14/2006 :  16:16:52   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit ToSeek's Homepage Send ToSeek a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal

Contrary to your statement, "Your defense has reduced itself to the five-year-old level of "Well, you did it, too!", that was not what I said at all. This is a perfect example of where your emotional reaction has prevented you from hearing what is being said.


What you said was "Read what you wrote, ToSeek, not the quote in your post. Read the title of the thread. Tell me that isn't more offensive to those people tinaa claimed were going to be insulted to hear their church is using marketing techniques, which BTW, they actually are." I can't see a whole lot of difference between that statement and "Well, you did it, too!"

quote:
The issue you think I am talking about is posting the Rove comment. You think I am defending the post. There was a mixed response as to whether the Rove reference was within the rules and within the context of the topic. But if the moderators say it wasn't, I have no argument with that.


If you have no argument with that, then why did you start a thread with a statement including "I would like someone to tell me where in these rules it forbids a single reference to a political figure that is relevant to a non-political discussion about communication."

quote:
The issue I was talking about was your accusation I had to know the Rove comment violated the rules and your accusation the Rove comment had no connection to the post topic and was just thrown in there. If a number of other people also thought the Rove reference was relevant, (maybe unnecessary, but not irrelevant), and other people weren't sure the comment did violate the rules, then how is it you are so sure I must have known?


I can find nowhere that I stated that you knowingly violated the rules with the Rove reference, though I could be wrong.

Additionally, you seem intensely irritated by my phrase "gratuitous dig", when you're admitting right here that the reference was gratuitous (i.e., unnecessary), and it certainly was derogatory, i.e., a dig.


quote:
You didn't think the post with the Shermer reference was against the board rules yet tinaa and Antonseb did. And in fact, you ignored that whole part of the incident as you ranted about the motives you deduced from my posts.

Tinaa attacked what I quoted from Shermer, claiming people would draw certain conclusions that would insult them. Kaptain K thought that was a poor reason to find a post violated the rules since it meant people would have to anticipate all sorts of things they couldn't possibly anticipate. Yet my reaction to tinaa's comment was immediately suspect by you for some bizarre reason I still don't quite get.


Well, I didn't get your reaction, either, and I will confess that I regret the accusatory wording of my response. I am still baffled by your interpretation of Tinaa's comment and was incensed by your ridiculing response to what you thought it said rather than what I understood it to say.

quote:
Now the thread is locked with final comment by Phil that is based on his only having read the first post (I think) and it wasn't clear what I was saying from that post alone. So Phil's response is distorted. We exchanged two more PMs after I sent him the one above and we resolved all the issues as far as I'm concerned. The thread is left, however, with a post which is somewhat condescending toward me. But I really don't care about that. People can judge me for themselves.


It is unfortunate that the thread ends that way, but I don't see any good way of ending it.

quote:
If you ever recognize your accusations were wrong about my awareness and motives in the offending post on BAUT and my response to tinaa's post, I'll be happy to resume a normal relationship as if this hadn't happened.


As I said above, I never intended to claim that you intentionally violated the board rules regarding the offending post, and my defense of Tinaa's comment should have been less accusing. If you are likewise willing to admit that your Karl Rove references and your religion reference could not unreasonably be construed as violating the board rules, then I am likewise satisfied.

quote:
OTOH, your last PM to me claiming even more dislike of my interactions with people on the BAUT forum will not likely be easily forgotten.


It would be nice if you would at least consider that my criticisms might have some validity rather than dismissing them as attacks.

quote:
But have no fear, while I believe the BAUT issues are currently resolved, I have found I really dislike the board in it's current state. While I have always enjoyed the lack of flame wars when Phil moderated, the current system of petty complaints being sent to the secret moderator forum is a bit too much like Jr High for my taste. At the moment, board moderation has turned into something akin to school yard policing with the rules being more important than the intent of preventing flame wars.



Let me note that you have not seen what I have said to the other moderators about their behavior (and you're not going to), which understandably (along with my sometime intemperate language) gives you the impression that I'm far more against you than I am.

As for the rules issue, one of the lessons I am going to try to take from this debacle is to work harder to avoid creating an adversarial relationship with posters. (Yes, it does seem ridiculous for me to say that under the present circumstances.) Some moderators do indeed seem almost to look for excuses to take disciplinary action, particularly against members they have found difficult.

The rules vs. preventing flame wars issue is a tough one. If we started interpreting the rules more flexibly, then we're liable to be accused of playing favorites or being inconsistent somewhere down the line. I'd rather be a stickler for the rules because then people at least know where they stand.

I'm not sure what to do about the "secret forum" issue. I think the moderators need a place to discuss governance issues without user involvement, though I see that it could give the impression that we're conspiring. The ideal might be to have some means of having a thread that the modera
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Kil
Evil Skeptic

USA
13467 Posts

Posted - 09/14/2006 :  18:03:15   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Kil's Homepage  Send Kil an AOL message  Send Kil a Yahoo! Message Send Kil a Private Message
Just to make a couple of things clear, we here at SFN do have a moderator folder that can only be seen by the staff. And we do discuss possible forum violations there, among other things. That said, we tend to run a pretty loose ship, moderation wise. Except for spam violators who are shown the door the moment we see the violation, we do discuss members who are in danger of being banned and come to a decision about it in the moderator folder. People banned get plenty of public warning. And there is a way back for them, even though no one banned has ever asked to be reinstated.

I am very proud of our moderators and the restraint and consistency they show. The trick is to have all of the staff on the same page. It took years to get our forum moderation as stable as it is now.

Uncertainty may make you uncomfortable. Certainty makes you ridiculous.

Why not question something for a change?

Genetic Literacy Project
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ToSeek
New Member

6 Posts

Posted - 09/14/2006 :  21:11:12   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit ToSeek's Homepage Send ToSeek a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Kil

Just to make a couple of things clear, we here at SFN do have a moderator folder that can only be seen by the staff. And we do discuss possible forum violations there, among other things. That said, we tend to run a pretty loose ship, moderation wise. Except for spam violators who are shown the door the moment we see the violation, we do discuss members who are in danger of being banned and come to a decision about it in the moderator folder. People banned get plenty of public warning. And there is a way back for them, even though no one banned has ever asked to be reinstated.

I am very proud of our moderators and the restraint and consistency they show. The trick is to have all of the staff on the same page. It took years to get our forum moderation as stable as it is now.




That's a good point. BAUT in its present form (with the current slate of moderators and set of rules) has only been around for just barely over a year. Clearly, we're still working some of the kinks out.
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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 09/15/2006 :  03:01:11   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
I only commented about the moderator forum because you complained about being talked about behind your back, ToSeek. That was uncalled for. I posted the thread about the BAUT specifically where I thought BAUT members would see it and make comments.

Maybe if we both try to find where we are talking past each other, instead of continuing our defensive positions, this can be resolved.
quote:
Originally posted by ToSeek
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal

Contrary to your statement, "Your defense has reduced itself to the five-year-old level of "Well, you did it, too!", that was not what I said at all. This is a perfect example of where your emotional reaction has prevented you from hearing what is being said.
What you said was "Read what you wrote, ToSeek, not the quote in your post. Read the title of the thread. Tell me that isn't more offensive to those people tinaa claimed were going to be insulted to hear their church is using marketing techniques, which BTW, they actually are." I can't see a whole lot of difference between that statement and "Well, you did it, too!"
You did do it too. But the reason I am pointing out you did it too is not because I care the comment in my post was determined to be against the rules, it's because I care you seem to think I should have known it was. I think it was a pretty gray area. There was one or more knee jerk reactions on BAUT but in the other two forums the exact same thread was started which didn't have the limits on discussion and no one said they found the reference unrelated or out of place with the post topic.

quote:
quote:
The issue you think I am talking about is posting the Rove comment. You think I am defending the post. There was a mixed response as to whether the Rove reference was within the rules and within the context of the topic. But if the moderators say it wasn't, I have no argument with that.
If you have no argument with that, then why did you start a thread with a statement including "I would like someone to tell me where in these rules it forbids a single reference to a political figure that is relevant to a non-political discussion about communication."
I went back and looked at that post when Phil seemed to misunderstand what the issues were. I agree I didn't make myself clear in that post. What mattered was Anton telling me not to restart the thread. It didn't matter to me that someone didn't like the Rove comment. My post does not make it clear I was talking about the thread. It looks like I was talking about the Rove comment in my post but taking that out was never a big deal. However, after I explained myself a few times it should have been more clear what I was talking about.

quote:
quote:
The issue I was talking about was your accusation I had to know the Rove comment violated the rules and your accusation the Rove comment had no connection to the post topic and was just thrown in there. If a number of other people also thought the Rove reference was relevant, (maybe unnecessary, but not irrelevant), and other people weren't sure the comment did violate the rules, then how is it you are so sure I must have known?
I can find nowhere that I stated that you knowingly violated the rules with the Rove reference, though I could be wrong.
"I'm getting more than a little tired of your trying to fudge your statements into something innocent, when they clearly are not." was what you said. By that post you were no longer referring to my reply to Tinaa. You were referring to the Rove comment. Read those highlighted statements of yours above and tell me they aren't the equivalent of "I think you are a liar." And when I tried to tell you why the things I had posted were indeed innocent, the explanation was attacked as more political discussion.

Think about that for a minute. I'm told the comment was over the political line. No big deal. But then I'm told the comment wasn't relevant to the topic. But it was relevant. The topic was about recognizing the broader message in a name. That is something Rove does all the time and very specifically, very expertly and he is widely known for it. How can someone explain the relevance of a comment when the explanation is against the rules?

I made that comment very matter of factly because it was. That's one part of this incident that is really being missed here. I'll address the gratuitous issue next but try to see this as I saw it. The rule says polite political discussion is OK in limited amounts when relevant to the science. The science in this case is the science of persuasion, communication, marketing and propaganda. And it is most certainly an advanced science despite the fact so many in the scientific community and the skeptical community are just beginning to notice.

Newt Gingrich developed a plan a decade ago which Karl Rove used as a springboard for his playbook. Take a look at this example:

GOP strategists christen "Democrat [sic] Party" -- and the media comply


quote:
In recent months, media figures, including news reporters at CNN, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, the Chicago Tribune, and the Associated Press echoed Republicans by employing the word "Democrat" as an adjective to describe things or people of, or relating to, the Democratic Party -- including referring to the "Democrat" Party itself, even though that is not the party's name.

The ungrammatical conversion of the noun "Democrat" to an adjective was the brainchild of Republican partisans, presumably an attempt to deny the opposing party the claim to being "democratic" -- or in the words of New Yorker magazine senior editor Hendrik Hertzberg, "to deny the enemy the positive connotations of its chosen appellation."

Further, Hertzberg wrote that "among those of the Republican persuasion," the use of " 'Democrat Party' is now nearly universal" thanks to "Newt Gingrich, the nominal author of the notorious 1990 memo 'Language: A Key Mechanism of Control,' and his Contract with America pollster, Frank Luntz." While Hertzberg noted that Luntz "road-tested the adjectival use of 'Democrat' with a focus group in 2001" and "concluded that the only people who really dislike it are highly partisan adherents of the ... Democratic Party," he also wrote that Luntz ha
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ToSeek
New Member

6 Posts

Posted - 09/15/2006 :  07:21:57   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit ToSeek's Homepage Send ToSeek a Private Message
I'm just going to respond to a few specific points because it's getting too complicated for me.

quote:
"I'm getting more than a little tired of your trying to fudge your statements into something innocent, when they clearly are not." was what you said. By that post you were no longer referring to my reply to Tinaa. You were referring to the Rove comment. Read those highlighted statements of yours above and tell me they aren't the equivalent of "I think you are a liar." And when I tried to tell you why the things I had posted were indeed innocent, the explanation was attacked as more political discussion.


If there's any one thing that really, really sticks in my craw about your posts is your repeatedly saying that you made a "reference" to Karl Rove, as if you stated that he was balding or worked in the White House. It was more than a "reference", you called him a liar, not just once but over and over again. (Admittedly, whenever you tried to explain why you called him a liar, you had to call him a liar again, so things built up.) Now, I know he's a liar, you know he's a liar, anyone who's been paying attention knows he's a liar (boy, it's nice to be able to say that here!), but that's not something we can bring up at BAUT unless it is highly relevant - and after 5,000 posts you should know that. (And that you found a way to start two other threads on the topic without ever mentioning Rove is sufficient indication that using him as an example was not highly relevant.) I find that a far more egregious misuse of the language than my "gratuitous" versus "unnecessary."

quote:
If you meant unnecessary, then why use the word gratuitous? Gratuitous implies more than unnecessary, it implies without any good reason other than some negative or sinister one. Gratuitous sex in a book is put in for the benefit of the sex, not because it adds anything to the plot or story. You can substitute the adjective, unnecessary, and say the book had unnecessary sex. But if you list two examples and one is redundant, you don't say that was a gratuitous example.


Merriam-Webster defines gratuitous as "not called for by the circumstances : UNWARRANTED". Since your post would have been just fine without the added description, I think "gratuitous" is not inappropriate language, though certainly "unnecessary" would have done just as well and been less inflammatory.

quote:
I do not consider myself to be the high moderator maintenance burden you seem to think I am. I consider it a problem the BAUT board creates rather than an issue with me. Do I use ad hominems? Do I insult people? No, I annoy some people because I don't give up and ignore them and because I have strong opinions. Out of almost 5,000 posts there have been a handful of incidents and in every case, the moderators were hard pressed to find some specific thing I said that was more than just being hard headed and annoying to someone. That is who I am. I try to remain diplomatic. I should have more people on ignore and walk away from some threads sooner. I'm certainly not perfect.


Well, you have a way of stating things that, while not violating the rules, can rub people the wrong way, not unlike my use of "gratuitous" versus "unnecessary." Both may be legitimate but the latter is more diplomatic.

quote:
I'm not privy to these complaints you speak of but let me guess. One or more people have whined to admin my sig bothers them? I had a political statement in my sig few years back. There was a complaint (or maybe more than one) and I believe Phil sent me a PM that requested but didn't demand I change it. So I changed it and the person who complained said they had no problem with the Democracy Now link and said in fact they listened to that news themselves. I can't remember who it was but it was a regular like Charlie in Dayton or someone. I've had the sig ever since. Grapes could probably find the thread where it was discussed.


Well, the very post that reported the derogatory reference to Karl Rove has the notation "This member has a long history of posting like this (I suppose) because it is clear that she will not be challenged. At some point her posts should be removed or allowed to be refuted." So at least one member has that impression. I'm not going to follow up with this since it would require hours of research either to support or refute, but just to let you know that some people have that impression of you. (If this does come up again, though, I will certainly challenge them to justify their claim.)

quote:
It isn't that the rules need to be flexible. It's that the goal should be to keep people on track, not to run around slapping wrists. If Anton wasn't fixated on the rules and was more concerned with keeping politics out of the discussion, he would have said the post topic was OK but the title and references to Rove weren't. Instead he felt the need to scold and threaten.


That's a very good point and something I hope we can learn from this situation. (Nereid is pushing this in the admin area and maybe if I join her we can get the moderators to step up a notch.) As I said before, we need to avoid creating adversarial relationships with posters and assume that they mean well unless there's clear evidence otherwise. (Obviously, there are a few people who have no interest in following the board rules, but they don't last long.)

quote:
So I haven't had a chance to read your PMs on the BAUT. I glanced at them but need to actually read them before commenting. I believe you when you say you didn't intend to sound so bad in your posts. I didn't say exactly what I had intended either. I told Phil I felt his last post pretty much resolved things. I don't feel so badly about your posts after these last exchanges. I think this issue has taken up more than enough of everyone's time.


It certainly has taken a lot of time. And I wouldn't have taken this much effort if I didn't fundamentally respect you and wanted to make you understand my concerns and the way I saw things. If I had no respect for you, I wouldn't have cared what you thought.
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Kil
Evil Skeptic

USA
13467 Posts

Posted - 09/15/2006 :  09:01:25   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Kil's Homepage  Send Kil an AOL message  Send Kil a Yahoo! Message Send Kil a Private Message
quote:
ToSeek:
Now, I know he's a liar, you know he's a liar, anyone who's been paying attention knows he's a liar (boy, it's nice to be able to say that here!

Not that you should give up your job over at BAUT but you might want to continue posting at SFN when the mood strikes. Our focus is more general and we welcome all (well, most) views. For example, we recognize that the direction (funding) of science is often in the hands of politicians. And we talk (or debate) about that openly here because our focus goes well beyond the actual science itself. We believe that the way politics effects science is an important issue for skeptics to consider.

I understand that BAUT is more science specific. And perhaps that is as it should be. There needs to be a place to go for those who don't want to have to defend their personal politics simply because they have an interest in science and want to discuss that.

There is room for all of us out there. I greatly admire Phil Plait and I doubt that there is a skeptic who doesn't admire him. (By the way, he is a member of SFN and does post here from time to time.)

So, ToSeek, if you ever get the urge, as a skeptic and critical thinker, to talk about something that goes beyond the rules of the forum you moderate, we would welcome your input here at SFN.

Uncertainty may make you uncomfortable. Certainty makes you ridiculous.

Why not question something for a change?

Genetic Literacy Project
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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 09/15/2006 :  15:38:29   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
Well, do I take Dave's approach with Mozina's thread and keep going until ToSeek realizes he is not looking at my post objectively, or do I give up? I think we both respect each other, ToSeek. So maybe it's worth a bit more effort.

Let's try to get to the essence of the issues. (Sorry, I apologize I still haven't had time to address anything in the PM but will read it later tonight.)

Does the BAUT board rule not say some limited polite discussion of politics when it relates to the science topic is allowed?

There are two issues here. Was the comment related and was it polite.

Polite seems to be your bigger complaint though related is what you can't seem to accept. Yes, I implied Rove was a liar by saying, "except I am not advocating by any means that we adopt lies and "Newspeak" terminology. (War is not peace and lies eventually backfire.)" He is one, he used lies like the Swift Boat campaign as a political strategy and you admit it is well known.

Because it is common knowledge, I made the comment without thinking it was going to be a big deal. The moderator said it was. I have no objection to that assessment. Why do you think there is a conflict here? We agree. What we don't agree on is my guilt over making the comment which comes back to the gratuitous and relevancy of mentioning Rove in the first place but let me finish this issue before tackling that one.

Sarongsong said, "Not comprehending the Rove connection."

She asked for an explanation. The thread was not political. On two other boards it did not result in a political discussion. This is what I mean when I say the BAUT board rules have a backside of causing attention and perceived insult at times to comments that would likely go unnoticed were it not for the rules.

I would not have elaborated were the question not asked. Here is what I replied:
quote:
Karl Rove is the master of the Republican spin machine and they are very good at choosing words. Take the Patriot Act, just what about it is patriotic, that we give up our democracy for the sake of the democracy? The Clean Air Act released air polluting companies from the requirement to decrease emissions. If you've seen John Stewart make fun of the "talking points", you'd see news clips of every Republican talk show host and/or Bush administration official on the talk show circuit repeating the exact same words, whatever the talking point of the day was. The effort is coordinated and well executed and language chosen is critical to the campaign.

My decision to use that example was purposeful but not intended to be inflammatory. I could have just as easily used the Discovery Institute since they devised the wedge plan to get ID into schools. The ID campaigners thought out and planned the language they would use in pushing that agenda. They were calculating when they choose words like calling ID science. Science, by definition does not pursue questions of the Designer yet that vocabulary was necessary to even get ID's foot in the door.

The idea is those of us promoting an evidence based world and principles of science as the way to collect and analyze that evidence are losing ground to the people who understand how to use language and marketing much more effectively. How do you get the government to make decisions based on science rather than politics and religion? How do you get the public to stop using worthless remedies? You have to at least compete with the politicians and "believers" in getting your message out. We aren't doing that very well right now.

You are a board moderator. You are looking for things that need moderating. I am focused on communicating science. From your perspective this comment was all about politics. From my perspective it was al
Edited by - beskeptigal on 09/15/2006 15:50:31
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
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Posted - 09/15/2006 :  21:26:26   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal

Well, do I take Dave's approach with Mozina's thread and keep going until ToSeek realizes he is not looking at my post objectively, or do I give up?
The sad part is that what you call my approach doesn't work on Mozina.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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ToSeek
New Member

6 Posts

Posted - 09/18/2006 :  07:42:55   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit ToSeek's Homepage Send ToSeek a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal

Well, do I take Dave's approach with Mozina's thread and keep going until ToSeek realizes he is not looking at my post objectively, or do I give up? I think we both respect each other, ToSeek. So maybe it's worth a bit more effort.



You see, that's just the sort of condescending remark that raises hackles. It's not an ad hom, but it certainly doesn't put me in a receptive mood for the rest of what you have to say.

As for the rest, I have other issues to deal with in my life that supercede this one. I've spent plenty of time on clarification and rapprochement, and I think we've gone most of the way we can go in that direction. The effort required to go further isn't going to yield much more, so I'm just going to drop the issue.

I am hoping to make it to the next TAM, so perhaps we will see each other there.
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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 09/18/2006 :  12:10:19   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
OK, help me out here. Was that line condescending? Not looking objectively and we both respect each other? Wow, what can you say to that?
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tomk80
SFN Regular

Netherlands
1278 Posts

Posted - 09/20/2006 :  14:56:19   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit tomk80's Homepage Send tomk80 a Private Message
If I was ToSeek, I would definitely see this line:
quote:
Well, do I take Dave's approach with Mozina's thread and keep going until ToSeek realizes he is not looking at my post objectively, or do I give up?

as insulting. You make the accusation that he is not looking at your replies objectively. Your reference to Mozina, at least to me, implies that he is not willing to do this either. It further implies that you are not willing to give in yourself. Since Mozina has posted on BAUT and has been banned there, he was probably seen there as a disruptive user, probably not as someone willing to openly discuss and quite probably a moron. ToSeek may well have been aware of this, as he is a moderator on that board. If not condescending, your comparison of him with Mozina is at the least insulting.

Regardless of whether you are right or not (I have not followed the discussion, nor do I intend to and I am not a member of the BAUT forums), if you want an open discussion where others want to consider your viewpoint such comments are really not helpful. The sentence was definitely not constructive (and I sincerely think that is quite an understatement), nor was it in anyway necessary. I would consider it an unnecessary insult and it would indicate to me, that you are yourself not willing to reconsider your own behavior and/or arguments. For me, this would indeed be enough of a reason to give you the same reaction as ToSeek has, as I would feel that discussion can only go downhill from there.

Tom

`Contrariwise,' continued Tweedledee, `if it was so, it might be; and if it were so, it would be; but as it isn't, it ain't. That's logic.'
-Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Caroll-
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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 09/21/2006 :  01:03:00   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
How is it an insult if it is what I believe is occurring? How is it an insult to lack objectivity? Perhaps if that were a characteristic you always had, but no one can claim to always be objective and certainly that is not an insult in this case. I think ToSeek is looking at my posts with the opinion he conceived earlier that I was lying about motive, trying to make something look innocent that wasn't, and so on. His perspective which was not objective is due to his being personally invested in the issue.

ToSeek: That is not what [tinaa] is saying at all, and I find it difficult to believe that your misunderstanding could be innocent.

ToSeek still baffles me, even after your last attempt to explain it...don't throw in gratuitous digs against religion or right-wing politicians along the way...And "you could delete the post" isn't much of an excuse.

ToSeekAnd I'm getting more than a little tired of your trying to fudge your statements into something innocent, when they clearly are not. You've called Rove a liar at least three times now, and you didn't need to the first time....However, neither of your objectionable statements of fact have been scientific ones....Your defense has reduced itself to the five-year-old level of "Well, you did it, too!


ToSeek ignored his own assessment that the 2nd post which was locked was actually OK as he became angrier I didn't accept his conclusions about my motives.

ToSeek:I think that accusing Karl Rove of lies and "Newspeak" in the first thread is outside the bounds of legitimate discussion here and merited a warning. I don't see any problems with the second thread, nor with the new one.

If it weren't for the personal accusations above, and the knowledge I have about what and why I wrote the posts which led to the above accusations, I think I would have dropped this issue long ago. But the above statements are false. And I have supported my statement the above accusations are false over and over in this thread and its predecessor on the BAUT. It is beyond my comprehension why I am believed to either be untrustworthy and lying or too ignorant to know my own thought process and motive for what I have posted.

What is with all these assumptions? Nothing in what I wrote is in your assumptions. You have just made a twisted fantasy and acted as if it was what I meant. Where is the evidence I meant what you claim?

I didn't recall until now Mozina was banned on the BAUT, but now that you mention it, I believe it was for arguing ad nauseum IIRC. I have no clue if any disruptive behavior was involved.

It doesn't matter anyway. I was comparing myself to Dave in that comment. Dave is one of the few people who would refuse to give up in an exchange such as the one with Mozina. "Do I take Dave's approach or give up?" Excuse me. That is a comment about me, not ToSeek. If you all want to imagine insults then pout about them, I will say something insulting, get real and grow up.

If you, ToSeek, or anyone else wants to twist more of my comments into a fantasy that I am a lying passive aggressive moron, might I recommend you ask me what I was implying before drawing your conclusion? And yes, I'm not mincing words which of course will only result in still more difficulties communicating here. But I've already posted more than enough discussion substantiating my original intentions and motives. There is little more I can say.

I'm not going to lie and say ToSeek was right. I have and will again without difficulty say when I am wrong. I was going to say 'readily admit' but perhaps one can argue I don't give in readily. But I do give in when presented with evidence that contradicts what I previously thought. In this case ToSeek, and now you have joined him, are claiming you know my motives and intentions and I somehow don't. ToSeek claims I know and am lying. This is not something any evidence has been presented which supports the claims. You can't have evidence because it simply isn't true.

After all the years I have been posting in this community, can any of you cite a history of me lying? Can any of you cite a history of me not recognizing my own motives and intentions? Should I be like Dave is clearly a statement about me. I'll be happy to apologize for making a statement that was misunderstood, as long as it's clear the post as I intended it had no implications about ToSeek.

None of us should be offended if someone comments they don't think we are being objective. That is an important observation a person of science would normally welcome since it affects our critical thinking, and when it is occurring, it isn't always recognized by the person who is lacking the objectivity.


Edited to add: I should also mention, stating you don't believe someone is being objective, if it were an insult, pales in comparison to stating someone is a disingenuous liar.

Edited by - beskeptigal on 09/21/2006 01:12:14
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